tapping noise from top of engine After timing belt was replaced

Hi- I need help! DESPERATELY! I own a 2001 Kia sportage- base model- 2.0L- 4 cyl- DOHC engine. about 98k miles on it and some what mechanically inclined.
Purchased it used- Changed the oil- replaced the thermostat. I was driving and the engine stopped- NO noise when it stopped and I figured it was the timing belt- had it towed to a local garage. There was about 4 -6 teeth missing. They replaced the belt and said it started right up- nice and quiet- ran for a little bit(no clue how long they ran it) BUT… I go to pick it up and starts up- but I notice alittle tapping noise- I go in- ask the shop- they said she was quiet- ok- maybe it was because it was cold. I drove to the bank(aprox 10 miles) the noise got LOUDER- you could hear the belt slipping or spinning… my poor little kia sounds like a “generator or sewing machine”. People look @ me like I have NO oil in it. The oil and temp is fine- I took it back to the shop and they said the timing is “FINE”- they took off the head- there is enough “clearance” and Nothing is touching- they are stumped(not great mechanics- but NOW I find out..ughh). What could cause the engine NOW after running quiet to sound like this? Is this an interference engine? did I do damage to it? OH- they did tell me- when they turn the crank shaft by hand- you can hear the noise!? HELP! I live in the country and a single mom with little $$$ and an active son in sports and scouts- I NEED MY CAR:( and really like the gas mileage… HELP- almost 2 wks with NO car!!!

3 thoughts on “tapping noise from top of engine After timing belt was replaced”

  1. Yes, this is an interference engine. The most common cause of this noise after a broken timing belt would be bent valves. A simple compression test on each cylinder should be able to determine which cylinder/s have the bent valve/s. Once the located, simply replacing the valves should correct the issue and remove the noise.

  2. Thanks Kristen- can I ask- how do you know it IS an “interference” engine?!?? I think the MOST frustrating part- besides NOT have a vehicle for 2 wks is the 50% of people say it IS and interference engine and 50% say it is NOT.
    I have even called the Kia consumer line w/my vin# and they said- no- I call 3 local dealers and got 3 different answers ALONG with one that say- PART of the engine is!?
    Thanks- Jan (I am ready to buy acouple goats and a wagon)!

  3. That is a fair question. I looked up the repair procedure for the timing belt replacement of a 2001 Kia Sportage and there is a Big “CAUTION” statement at the beginning of the procedure that says

    “This application is an interference engine. Do not rotate camshaft or crankshaft when timing belt is removed, or engine damage may occur.”

    So when the timing belt broke while driving, it allows the components to come in contact with each other and bend the valves.

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